We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Never interfere with the enemy when he is making a mistake

That’s a line that the Rod Steiger character uses in the the 1970 film Waterloo. And it’s a line I have been repeating to myself again and again over the last few months.

My enemies in the Establishment, whether it be the media, communists, social justice warriors or the last-ditch Remainers have been obligingly making error after error. I could point out their mistakes and laugh but there is that danger – however remote – that they might listen and learn. You see, I don’t want them to learn. What I want them to do is to keep the gas pedal pressed down hard as they can as they drive the juggernaut of bad ideas over the cliff and into oblivion. In such circumstances it is best to keep ones counsel.

Even so, when Prince Charles co-authors a Ladybird book on climate change I feel obliged to comment. You see, I am rather fond of our vestigial monarchy. Don’t ask me why, I just am. But for the heir apparent to involve himself in a political argument at a time when his side is losing is madness.

Prince Charles hopes the new Ladybird book, which will be available from Thursday, will act as a simple guide to the topic and win over climate change sceptics.

It’s a Ladybird book. It’s aimed at children. That makes it indoctrination.

I loved this from one of his co-authors:

I don’t think there has ever been a Ladybird book before in the history of ladybird books to have been subject to multiple rounds of peer review…

Keeping the pedal to the metal and beyond.

There are times when I think that Brenda’s main motivation in staying alive is to prevent her son doing irreparable damage to the monarchy.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on TumblrShare on RedditShare on Google+Share on VKEmail this to someone

40 comments to Never interfere with the enemy when he is making a mistake

  • “I don’t think there has ever been a Ladybird book before in the history of ladybird books to have been subject to multiple rounds of peer review…”

    I think we can disregard that as bollocks from the cover picture alone…

  • It would be a shame is Charles was the last king but much like our PM, he is just not very bright.

  • Jacob

    The Falangists in Spain, in the 1930s had a slogan:”We don’t want idiot kings”.

  • The Falangists in Spain, in the 1930s had a slogan:”We don’t want idiot kings”.

    As opposed to idiot Prime Ministers and idiot Presidents and idiot Caudillos? At least idiot Kings are less damaging provided they cannot actually do anything other than write children’s books or raise magnificent corgis 😆 Trouble is Charles does not seem to understand his job is predicated upon not having any public opinions.

  • Erik

    You see, I am rather fond of our vestigial monarchy. Don’t ask me why, I just am.

    Perhaps I might suggest a why? Doesn’t have to be yours, but I like this reason: the vestigial monarch ‘blocks off’ a top celebrity spot, so there’s that much less brain-rotting nonsense and celebrity spats from the kind of nincompoops who would otherwise be fighting for that spot.

  • Derek Buxton

    I too like the Monarchy…..but I fear that the Heir to the throne is a great disappointment. He is not there to tell us what to eat or not eat nor to prevent us having the energy that in this century we need, especially when he will not take the consequences. On the contrary, he is making money from the scare over a myth, our money!

  • Indeed Derek but we have known Charles was a tool for quite some time. I dread the day her Delightful Corginess dies and that turd inherits the Big Hat.

  • Patrick Crozier

    “…her Delightful Corginess…”

    Heh.

  • Paul Marks

    Prince Charles can have any opinions he likes – as long as he stops publicly expressing them AFTER he becomes King. And as a loyal subject of the Queen I hope Prince Charles becomes King when he is about 100 years old.

    As for “Climate Change” (the new term for “Global Warming”) Paul makes his standard point….

    The scientific theory may actually be TRUE (libertarians should not automatically assume the theory is false) – but if the theory is true the correct response is a massive expansion of NUCLEAR POWER. Even James Lovelock (the “Gaia Man”) admitted that a massive expansion of nuclear power (which can only be practically achieved by radical DEREGULATION of nuclear power) is the only way to really reduce C02 emissions.

    Yet “Green” forces (especially in Germany – where they include the demented Chancellor who is supposedly a conservative) want to SHUT DOWN nuclear power stations.

    Till they change their position (180 degrees – from being anti nuclear to being pro the radical EXPANSION of nuclear power) these “environmentalists” deserve nothing but contempt, utter and complete contempt – as their belief in the “C02 emissions are harmful” theory is clearly fake. I repeat – if they start to support the radical deregulation of nuclear power and the dramatic expansion of nuclear power, then they are sincere and deserve to be listened to.

  • Mr Ed

    An idiot King would tend to discredit the institution and the supposed basis for it, whereas an idiot President might tend to discredit the successor to his immediate predecessor, and those who chose him.

    I wish that those Ministers of Her Britannic Majesty’s government who reportedly have lived in dread of a ‘spidery’ hand-written letter from the son of the Duke of Cornwall would have written back ‘Your RH, From your postcode I see that X is your MP, you may wish to raise the issues in your letter of (date) with the Hon. Member.’.

  • knirirr

    The scientific theory may actually be TRUE (libertarians should not automatically assume the theory is false) – but if the theory is true the correct response is a massive expansion of NUCLEAR POWER.

    Indeed, it might well be true, and if it is then using more nuclear power might well be an appropriate solution.
    Back when I was involved in this sort of work it my colleagues would sometimes express their disappointment that there weren’t enough free market solutions on offer for the problems their research was uncovering. For, of course, even if our fate were as dire as some predictions suggest then it by no means implies that “watermelon” solutions are effective or moral. It would be nice to see discussions as to how we might deal with climate change in a way that preserves liberty and prosperity.

    Of course, if anyone replies to this it will probably be to say “but we don’t need to do anything about ‘climate change’ because there’s no such thing; it’s all a conspiracy” (or similar). 😉

  • Erik (January 22, 2017 at 11:24 am) mentions one advantage of a constitutional monarch who ordinarily reigns rather than rules, but there are others.

    1) The US takes more than two months after an election to replace its president. That’s enough time to delete a lot of emails, erase a lot of hard drives, pay off an inconvenient witness or ten, pardon some scum and do some “now it can’t hurt the election” villainy. In the UK, the election is held on one day and the former PM drives to the palace to resign around noon the next day, after which the new PM kisses the Queen’s hand around tea time. It leaves very little time for a suprised and sore loser to do rotten stuff.

    2) The history of Japan shows how a reigning monarch can be a kind of insurance policy. For centuries, would-be shoguns competed and the winner visited Kyoto (IIRC) to be appointed by the emperor. (Except that they competed with samurai swords, not ballot papers, it was a lot like Britain 🙂 ). Then Japan, like other non-western countries, faced the existential threat of the arrival of the west, its technology, etc. In China there was no such revered figure uninvolved in the daily grind of politics, so there was no middle path between ignoring the threat (before 1900, the Chinese government bought up interior railroads and closed them as their way of coping !) and un-revered revolutionaries such as Mao. Japan used their sovereign to find the middle way.

    The many “scientists”, “science reporters” and others who claim expertise while peddling propaganda are immediately culpable. Their victims are less so – propaganda is told so it can bemuse its victims. Charles has good taste in art and architecture; he has called out the ‘experts’ in that field and improved the quality of modern architecture in the UK – and been accused of “supporting Nazi architecture” for it. He does not claim to be a scientist and is believing what he is told. Or, as it would have been said in mediaeval times, “His royal highness is being treacherously advised”. 🙂

    Of course, we the public are also being treacherously advised. Some of us have realised this, others not (yet). I don’t think a ladybird book will do much harm since by the time its young readers have grown up it will be awfully obvious what the temperature is.

  • Kevin B

    knirirr, the reply might be: ‘Of course the climate is changing, always has, always will. But the solution to climate change is to adapt, and it will be much easier to adapt if we are wealthy’ And as Willis at WUWT pointed out the other day, taxing energy is taxing one of the big inputs to wealth creation and that has an enormous knock on effect.

    None of the current ‘solutions’ to climate change will make a measurable difference to the climate. Even if we carry out all the strictures of the Climate Change Act, the world’s temperature will not change from whatever it would have been without the CCA. If the nations of the world carry out all their obligations made in the Paris Accords, according to the models the temperature will change by a couple of tenths of a degree centigrade.

    So, when the climate changes – either getting hotter as the IPCC claim or colder as an increasing number of solar scientist claim – then our only recourse is to adapt and it will be much easier to adapt if we haven’t turned our energy system into an even more expensive, even less efficient one than the mess we have now.

  • @Paul Marks – As for “Climate Change” (the new term for “Global Warming”) Paul makes his standard point….

    Back in the Sixties, we were warned of onrushing inevitable climate cooling. After we failed to cool, they began warning us of onrushing inevitable climate warming and sea-level rise. They really haven’t shown up to the degree predicted.

    Warnings of cooling failed. Warnings of heat are at best overwrought. Thus, we have Climate Change, because unlike cooling or warming, it cannot be falsified. Climate has been changing for billions of years, and there’s no way we’ll stop it. Thus, we no longer can thumb our noses at the doomsayers and say “You guessed wrong! Nyah nyah nyah!”

  • Laird

    As to the “vestigial monarchy”, I rather like the idea, mostly for the reason Erik expressed. An hereditary monarch takes on many essentially ceremonial functions which, in the US, devolve upon the President. Aside from consuming presidential time and attention, this also contributes to the “cult of the presidency” and the (ever-growing) belief in the power and utility of a Big Man running government.

    Niall, I agree with your complaint about the length of time between the election and investiture of the new President. However, the date of his inauguration is set by the Constitution (Amendment XX) as January 20, and the date of election* is set by statute as “the Tuesday next after the first Monday in November” (the same date as that set for the election of Congressmen and Senators). That statute dates back to 1845, and although it could theoretically be changed such is extremely unlikely. Actually, we should be grateful that the delay is as short as it is; originally the President was inaugurated on March 4!

    * It should also be noted that this is the date for the selection by the states of the electors in the Electoral College; this is not a vote for the President. The manner in which each state chooses its electors is left entirely up to it; there is no requirement that there be a popular vote at all. The 17th Amendment provided for direct popular election of Senators (an idiotic change) but it says nothing about presidential elections. In my opinion we should return to selection of presidential electors by the state legislatures, but of course that would be “undemocratic” and hence utterly beyond the pale.

  • Mr Ed

    As Laird points out, there is a multi-layered process for the selection of the President (and V-P), hence the time taken, but also, it appears to have had in mind not a bipartisan election (which it effectively is these days) but rather a possible split count, which, should no one prevail, falls to the newly-elected House voting by State delegation, and the entirely new House only starts in January, so there is a redundancy in the system but one that ensures the most recent House election would indirectly matter to the Presidency.

  • Lee Moore

    The manner in which each state chooses its electors is left entirely up to it; there is no requirement that there be a popular vote at all.

    Up to a point Lord Copper. If this were true there would be no scope for the federal courts to get involved in Presidential elections. But they do. All the time.
    The conclusion must be that if the state chooses to have an election which gives state voters some sort of right to select the Electors, then that right becomes subject to all the federal rules about equal protection etc. Bush v Gore simply couldn’t have made it into court if federal law didn’t have some way of inserting itself into the proceedings.

    IMHO, states that are happy to have state elections for Presidential Electors, but would prefer to dispense with the benefits of advice from the federal courts on how to conduct them, should make it clear in their state law that :

    1. Electors are to be appointed at the sole discretion of the legislature, unless
    2. A popular election is held which is not affected by any federal court intervention (ie there is no such intervention or the result of the intervention is to uphold state law) in which case Electors are to be appointed in accordance with the popular vote n the state

  • Chester Draws

    An hereditary monarch takes on many essentially ceremonial functions which, in the US, devolve upon the President.

    Most countries know this, which is why many have basically ceremonial Presidents. You’d be hard pressed to name the Presidents of Switzerland or Finland. And that goes even for Swiss or Finns. How many of you can name the President of Germany?

    The advantage of such “rulers” is that they don’t settle into power, and therefore don’t have family which settles into power.

    My issue with Queenie isn’t Herself, but the fact that we are expected to care and pay for assorted family members through up to five generations (when Queen Mum was still around). That has nothing at all to do with needing a stable head of state, and everything to do with vestigal Medieval systems of rule.

  • As it happens I was just musing on the very point that PC mentions – not interrupting your enemy when he’s making a mistake.

    This was provoked by the outgoing CIA director’s painfully partisan hissy fit about Trump’s visit to the CIA yesterday. Shirley, I thought. if you’re a clever CIA man, you could undermine Trump more effectively than that. By, er, trying to come across as an honest fellow, a steady public servant. But no, it’s hissy fits all round, which just serves to inoculate Trump against myriad justifiable criticisms. The Office of Government Ethics fellow is just the same. A shrewd fellow could stick all sorts of needles into Trump and his nominees. Instead he orders his staff to send round spoof tweets and makes nakedly anti-Trump speeches.

    May the Lord send me enemies who are obvious, and protect me from enemies who are subtle.

  • Paul Marks

    Lots of good comments – by Knirirr, Niall, and all the others.

    I will add my comment on the “how to elect the President” thing.

    Each State should send a Senator to a unicameral Congress (a Senate) subject to recall – and this body should elect the President or Executive Council (New Hampshire still has an Executive Council – as well as a Governor) also subject to recall.

    This would make it obvious that the Federal Government was alliance of States for the Common Defence (nothing else) – and it would also make it obvious that the President (or Executive Council) did NOT “speak for the people”.

    “Paul you have just cribbed Roger Sherman” – of course I have, I have never claimed to be an original thinker.

    I will now crib Luther Martin and point out that having a Supreme Court made up of judges picked by the very government it is supposed to limit is insane. If a Constitution is too complicated for a jury to understand, it is too complicated PERIOD.

    The ceremonial side.

    I love British ceremonial stuff – but if I was designing a system from scratch I would have no ceremonial stuff at all.

    Just as I love buildings such as Windsor Castle, or the Palace of Westminster – but I was actually designing government buildings myself what I would design (or just buy from some other use) would be a little house rather like the old Delaware State Capitol by to the 1920s.

  • Mr Ed

    the fact that we are expected to care and pay for assorted family members through up to five generations (when Queen Mum was still around)

    At my school, I was expected to pray for them, but anyway, what is your basis for asserting that we are expected to pay for them, given that the income from the Crown Estates more than covers the cost of the Royal Family, Fuzz and all?

  • Laird (January 22, 2017 at 6:53 pm), I agree the time gap between election and inauguration is unlikely to change, as it would require a constitutional amendment – and a president so sure of winning a second term they would risk the shortening of their first. (IIRC, the inauguration date was moved from March to January during FDR’s presidency.)

    My thought was rather that if the inauguration were changed to be the day after the election, there could be difficulties when a close result was plausibly challenged. The question of who maintains or appoints whom would involve numbers of people, and would tend to appear more political because these people are involved in day-to-day politics. In the UK, if the result is unclear, the sovereign can maintain an existing government or replace it, or appoint a caretaker PM pro tem, while an issue is resolved, and it looks less political.

  • nemesis

    Well, if the climate stopped changing – that would be the time to start worrying.

  • lucklucky

    “Never interfere with the enemy when he is making a mistake.”

    Wrong. If they are selling the mistake and you don’t point it you can’t never win. Worse if they are ready to point the failure at you. That is why history is like broken record. The culture that can dominate the narrative is what wins despite millions of errors. While facts matter it is far from being the main driver. The Story is what matters.

  • There is an alternate reasonable approach to climate change besides nuclear power, which is to inquire as to what would be an optimum climate for human flourishing and build a planetary thermostat to get us there and keep us broadly in that range. As it happens, the putative greens really don’t like answering that question because it seems that the optimum temperature range is above what we are at today.

    You don’t have to sign up for the theory of catastrophic climate change in order to be in favor of a planetary thermostat. The prospect of the elimination of ice ages and the amelioration of any nuclear winter that might crop up in future seems good enough benefits on their own.

    Even better is that one doesn’t have to do much at present, merely pursue orbital manufacturing, space mining, and cheap launch and maneuver as first order targets. We’re already doing that in the hopes of making money so carry on. What does need to happen are a series of paper planning exercises as to how fast progress needs to be made on the goals so that we are assured that we can build up some sort of system in good time.

    We will know in a few decades whether global warming really threatens us all. The project to broadly control our climate can continue no matter the result with no waste and to the ultimate profit of mankind.

  • Bod

    In theory, we *could* know in a few decades whether global warming really threatens us *if* the scientific community works to establish a baseline dataset that has been collected in a rigorous and consistent (possibly even scientific manner) which would provide a control.

    Unless there’s a whole parallel program of unified data collection in place that I haven’t heard about, I’m not seeing this necessary *prerequisite* being established, because bog help us, NASA and the UEA sequences are terminally compromised.

  • Slartibartfarst

    One could sometimes feel a bit sorry for Charles. He seems to be a very sincere chap. One would like to feel sure that his motivation was pure and that he would sincerely want what’s best for the people of Britain and the world. However, an indoctrinating Ladybird book on “climate change” (aka “global warming”) will probably be looked back on with hindsight as an unfortunate/regrettable episode.

    The WBK (Would-be king) has probably had an experience of bad advice from a so-called “Climate Science Expert”, and, if it is indeed true – as I have heard – that he is somewhat gullible and limited in the critical thinking skills dept., then that advice may well have formed his opinion/belief. Simple people are easy to delude.

    That’s the nub of the thing really – opinion/belief. It is irrational, by definition. One wonders whether he might change his opinion/belief if it was explained to him differently by another “climate science expert”, but would it matter?

    Speaking as a keen environmentalist and someone who cut his eyeteeth in Statistics 101 on the analysis of the dataset of tree ring data describing the Mediaeval Warm Period, and then becoming involved in modelling weather systems in the North Sea, I did not have and do not have an opinion. I used to think that climate science was being conducted in a proper manner and that the outputs (theories, models, etc.) were all pukka work. I was too busy elsewhere to apply critical thinking to whatever they were doing, so assumed their findings were OK. I was blissfully unaware of any debate.

    Then in 2009 I read with surprise about some of the published emails from the Climategate FOI leak (dump of hacked email files), and I decided that if I was to make any sense of it I would have to find out for myself. So, I downloaded the dump and laboriously read through it all (after putting the emails into a Thunderbird email database). I have also personally studied/analysed a lot of the publicly available data.

    The key problem is that the data does NOT substantiate the hypotheses or the climate models – which is presumably why the players would seem to have resorted to fraud and stochastic trickery to “make it so”.
    What I understood from the emails was that a great deal of the science (and the stochastic method) was already shonky, if not fraudulent, and that a lot of the SEA CRU people and others in the game (IPCC, etc.) simply couldn’t be trusted to tell the truth, even though/if they probably knew what it was.
    For example:

    “The fact is we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t.” – Kevin Trenberth, Climate Scientist at the University of East Anglia CRU (Climate Research Unit).

    The above refers to what became known as “The Pause” – a statistical hiatus in the warming temp anomaly. It stands out in the data as plain as a pikestaff.
    Climategate was revealed in 2009. Having previously steadfastly refuted the idea of a hiatus,the UK MetOffice only quietly released the data confirming it’s existence on New Year’s Eve 2012, by which time the hiatus was then 15 years old. Now it is 19 and seems likely to go on to 20.

    When I read the Climategate emails and after they were publicly verified as being genuine, I was as as gobsmacked as I was when I discovered that my highly trusted business partner, after unilaterally electing to manage the bank accounts, had then quietly proceeded to syphon off approx. $60,000 of funds.
    Climategate was evidence of arguably fraudulent and shabby practice.

    So, I got back into studying the subject of climate. At this point in 2017 I am very much more aware of the very good and validated science work that has been carried out, and that the issue is now probably just a political fiasco with belated damage control on all fronts. However, those Climategate frauds/cretins and their supporters, variously from the SEA CRU, the IPCC and elsewhere, have probably set back climate science for a decade at least, and, as a result, perfectly good scientists likely have meanwhile been getting tarred with the same brush.

    So, “Once bitten, twice shy”, as they say. I don’t “believe” in things, and if I did I wouldn’t rely on anything any of the so-called “experts” might tell me, whatever bias they may or may not have.
    Definitely though, I would advocate what The Royal Society has as its now apparently forgotten motto “Nullius in verba” (Latin for ”Take nobody’s word for it/Find out for yourself”),

    Anyone who says”There is a consensus amongst scientists on climate change (aka ‘global warming’).” would presumably be ignorant/misguided, lying or irrational.
    For example, such a statement would seem to include up to three logical fallacies:
    (a) argumentum ad verecundiam (appeal to authority; conventional propriety).
    (b) argumentum ad ignorantiam (forwarding a proposition without any certain proof).
    (c) argumentum ad populum (appeal to the people/consensus, popular sentiment – appeal to the majority; appeal to loyalty).

    When speaking with such people, I would recommend keeping both one’s hands in one’s pockets.
    Therefore, whether it is the WBK or the ex-Potus recently departed from the White House, if money/power was involved, then there is always the distinct possibility that neither individual would necessarily have been simply innocently ill-informed by his aides.

    In the case of the WBK, I’m not sure that a Ladybird book would really qualify as a political “money/power” motivator. However, for the ex-POTUS, there would seem to have been a potential disconnect to have said/done what has been said/done regarding “climate”, Solyndra and the US EPA, and the remorseless and compulsory banging of the “climate change” drum, etc.
    In that light, the WBK could seem to be merely gullible and pretty guileless, but in the US case it is likely all about money/power and religio-political ideology, where truth per se is irrelevant.

    Happy days.

  • Rich Rostrom

    “the Rod Steiger character … in … Waterloo.”

    That would be the Emperor Napoleon, and the quoted phrase is a famous aphorism of Napoleon.

    The given attribution is like citing “If we do not hang together, we shall most assuredly hang separately!” as a line spoken by “the Howard Da Silva character in 1776.”

  • David Bolton

    A chap called David Siegel wrote an essay which I think states the case against Climate Change very nicely. It’s on medium. It’s not a short read but well worth the effort.

  • TomJ

    On supporting 5 generations of royals: notwithstanding the Crown Estate point, the US is now paying over $1m a year in Presidential pensions, up to half a mil in office expenses and Secret Service protection for 5 couples and a few kids.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Former_Presidents_Act

  • Slartibartfarst (January 23, 2017 at 3:21 am), I travelled the same road in 2007. The UN chief’s statement that “the science is settled, it is time to stop debating it and concentrate on dealing with it” (quoted from memory) at the end of April that year rang an alarm bell in my mind, so, being between contracts at that moment, I took time to research its true status. (It was also followed by the coldest May I can remember – the earliest example I recall of the Gore effect. 🙂 )

    Before I started, I assumed there was a respectable amount of genuine science behind the obvious overborne hype. By the time I finished, I thought that “man-made global warming” was a combination of con job and cluelessness. The hockey stick graph is a perfect example of both:

    – That they scaled, ordered and truncated so as to ‘hide the decline’ in the public version was consciously deceitful.

    – That they did not understand what the decline was telling them was cluelessness about statistics. Any competent statistician, seeing the long flat line in the past, then the short sharp rise in the period of other measurements, followed (in the un-doctored version) by the line dropping back down again, would at once think, “Have I fitted my data?”

    (If you know what it means for a policemen to fit up a suspect, you can guess what it means for a scientist to fit their data. You have some data saying “I’m not at all sure your hypothesis is right”. You take it into a dark room armed with some statistical procedures, and when you come out, the data is saying, “Yes, yes, It’s all valid; just don’t separate my principal components again and I’ll confirm anything! 🙂 )

    By the latter half of 2007, I already strongly suspected what became clear in 2009 (when the climate emails revealed they had labelled the dropping line ‘the divergence problem’ and ignored it): these people were not competent in the basic statistics required for their job. That they hid the line in their publicity machine was a moral disgrace. That they were merely puzzled by it in private was a scientific disgrace; they none of them had even the minimal statistical skills needed for the ordinary work of their profession.

  • bobby b

    This remains my favorite paper concerning Climategate.

    It’s long – 180 pages – but it covers the individual e-mails and details why they’re important and what they say.

  • Jacob

    “Charles does not seem to understand…”. Yes, a lot of things…
    The idiot PMs and Presidents at least get vetted by a terribly long and arduous election process, but the idiot kings are exempt from it.
    It’s a pity that Her Corginess hadn’t invested more time educating her son instead of the corgis. I don’t mean educating him about climate science (probably impossible), but about when it is proper to express personal views and when not.

  • Bod

    There’s plenty of real evidence that Chucky is not the sharpest brick in the hod. If you can only get a Desmond from Cambridge in a bunch of really ‘soft’ ‘ologies’ when you’re the heir to the throne (as the first ever heir to the throne to attend Uni) there’s a tell right there for you.

    While I don’t agree that only climate scientists should opine on climate science, Charles is almost uniquely unqualified to address the subject in an objective manner, even if one concedes that he should address it at all. Same goes for his semi-professional advocacy for alternative medicine which further helped to tarnish his reputation.

    It must be difficult for a man of such profoundly mediocre intellect to separate himself from the role of being Monarch-in-Waiting. We live in a society where self-esteem is so tied up in “being relevant” that it’s understandable that he might act the way he does.

  • Paul Marks

    If the President’s picks for senior positions have to be vetted and then voted on by the Senate – then having the election in November and the coming-into-office in March is actually reasonable.

    Still one thing we will see the death of soon is the filibuster rule – which is not mentioned in the Constitution. The Senate, for better or worse, is going to become more like the House of Representatives (and the British House of Commons) a party political place.

    As for Prince Charles.

    Like George IV – Charles will be remembered for his building projects. Like Windsor Castle, Brighton Pavilion and the Regent’s Park area? Then you like the legacy of George IV.

    Go to Poundbury in Dorset – if you like it then you like the legacy of Prince Charles. If not then not.

  • If Charles stuck to things like Poundbury, I would be far better disposed towards him.

  • Eric

    Indeed Derek but we have known Charles was a tool for quite some time. I dread the day her Delightful Corginess dies and that turd inherits the Big Hat.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if she outlived him.

  • Patrick Crozier

    ‘“the Rod Steiger character … in … Waterloo.”

    That would be the Emperor Napoleon…’

    I was wondering when someone would spot that.

  • nemesis

    I stumbled into Poundbury once and found it a very surreal experience. Everything looked perfect on the outside – manicured within an inch of its life but you could imagine very dark dealings behind closed doors.

  • Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker!) Gray

    Ladybird do a very good line of satirical books, designed for adults so they will think that they can cope with the real world. I found them in the comedy section of a bookstore. I have not yet seen this one, but it should be just as good!